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The Wetter, the Better

New U.S. water park attractions for the 2005 season

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Typhoon Lagoon Disney World Crush photo

The triple uphill water coaster, Crush 'n' Gusher, at Walt Disney World's Typhoon Lagoon.

Arthur Levine, 2005. Licensed to About.com.
Updated June 07, 2005
Water parks continue to make waves with new slides, water coasters, bowl rides, and other wild ways to get wet and stay cool. No matter where your travels may be taking you this summer, there's bound to be some new water park attractions to check out.

In previous articles, I've reviewed new outdoor water parks that have opened this season, such as Hurricane Harbor at Six Flags Great America in Illinois and Wildwater Kingdom Water Park at Geauga Lake in Ohio. I've also compiled an overview of the new attractions at Six Flags water parks for the 2005 season, including six (!) new Tornado funnel rides at six different parks. Now, let's tale a look at what's on tap for some of the other major outdoor water parks this year:

Crush 'n' Gusher

Uphill water coasters
Typhoon Lagoon at Walt Disney World, FL

Not one, not two, but three uphill water coasters offer three different thrill ride experiences at the tropical water park. In typical Disney fashion, Imagineers have taken a standard water park ride and overlaid it with some whimsical themeing; the attraction is housed an "abandoned tropical fruit processing plant." Try all three coasters--I'm partial to the Banana Blaster.
See some crushing and gushing in action at the Crush 'n' Gusher photo gallery.

Crush 'n' Gusher is among a slew of new attractions the Florida mega-resort is featuring as part of its 50th anniversary salute to Disneyland. Check out my Walt Disney World's Happiest Celebration on Earth Overview.

Disco H2O

Themed bowl ride
Wet 'n Wild, Orlando, FL

Also in Florida, the original water park, Wet 'n Wild, returns to its 1970s roots with a unique retro attraction. Like other bowl rides, Disco H2O sends riders on a raft--in this case, four-person cloverleaf tubes--racing down a slide and into a large funnel where they swish around a few times before getting flushed out the bottom. Inside its new bowl ride, however, Wet 'n Wild turns on flashing lights, spins a mirror ball, and pumps up the disco beat. Polyester leisure bathing suits are optional. See Disco H2O in action at the Water Parks 2005 Preview photo gallery.

Black Anaconda

Uphill water coaster
Noah's Ark, Wisconsin Dells, WI

At 1/4-mile long and reaching speeds up to 30 mph, Noah's Ark claims this is America's longest, fastest water coaster. Its six uphill sections (powerful jets propel the rafts uphill in water coasters) may also set a record. Bound to be a popular ride, Black Anaconda's larger-capacity three-person rafts and quick launch cycle should keep the line moving.

Triton

Water slide complex
Mt. Olympus Water and Theme Park, Wisconsin Dells, WI

To help jump-start the new mega-park formed by the merger of Family Land water park with Mt. Olympus theme park, the property is introducing a huge five-story water slide tower with a six-passenger mat racing slide and two family raft rides. Located across the street from Noah's Ark (and not far from a bunch of indoor water parks--the Dells is the world's chlorination capital), the hybrid park offers coasters and other dry ride fun as well. Read about the new Hades underground wood coaster Mt. Olympus is also debuting this season. In addition to the outdoor attractions, the merged resort features the Bay of Dreams indoor water park. See a rendering of Triton at the Water Parks 2005 Preview photo gallery.

Castaway Creek, Ripsnort Ridge, The Screamin' Wombat, and Boomerang Lagoon

Lazy river, body slides, and heated pool
Crocodile Dundee's Boomerang Bay Beach Club at Paramount's Great America, Santa Clara, CA

After debuting its new Aussie-themed water park last year to great acclaim and huge crowds, ParamountÍs Great America is tripling its size this year with a huge heated lagoon, two body slides, a lazy river, chichi private cabanas, and new changing facilities. See Castaway Creek in action at the Water Parks 2005 Preview photo gallery.

Next page: More 2005 water park attractions, including the Bahari wave pool at Indiana's Splashin' Safari, the Pacific Spin funnel ride at San Diego's Soak City U.S.A., and Da' FlowRider surfing ride at Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park in Oahu, HI.

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